Kitesurfing in Vietnam is worth writing home about

 

The wind is strong, the weather is warm, and the beer is cheap.

…and did we mention the length of the coastline? ( it’s 3,444 km, FYI).

By all accounts, kiteboarding in Vietnam is awesome.

 

Season for kitesurfing in Vietnam

The wind blows hard during the high season, which runs from October to April (on paper, at least. It’s maybe more realistic to consider the season as November-March).

That said:

Vietnam’s kitesurfing season peaks from December to February.

But it’s not just the winter winds that blow; you can even sneak in a couple of summer sessions, too- as long as you stick around long enough to make the most of the sporadic southwesterlies.

 

What can you expect while kitesurfing in Vietnam?

Over the past 10 years, Vietnam has established itself as one of the best kiteboarding locations in Asia (you can double that number if you consider the windsurfing nomads who have been coming for 20 years or more).

While Mui Ne has long been a top spot for strong wind lovers, surfer dudes, and salty dogs, there are a ton of other incredible kite spots in Vietnam that tend to slip under the radar.

From north to south, here are 9 noteworthy locations for kiteboarding in Vietnam:

 

Kitesurfing in Da Nang

With its own international airport (and close proximity to one of Vietnam’s most popular tourist towns, Hoi An), the kitesurfing game in Da Nang is one of convenience as much as good conditions.

The beach is big and the water is much less crowded than some of Vietnam’s southerly kite spots. That said, the facilities are also far less developed.

The wind is light, but the upside is that it’s sometimes possible to kitesurf here during Vietnam’s ‘low’ wind season (April-October). During this time, you could be treated to a string of days with 12-18 knots coming from the southwest.

Post monsoon season can also be great for waves, so if you’re into a spot of surfing Da Nang is worth a look.

There are a small number of surfing schools that cater for the community of local riders as well as the wave hunting nomads who pass through.

Learn more about the city through the eyes of nomadic notes.

 

Kitesurfing in Nha Trang

Vietnam’s notorious south central party town has built up a lot of hype over the past few years.

It wasn’t long ago that Nha Trang was a low-key beach town with authentic roots, but in true Vietnam style, developments happened fast and furious….and shiny.

The city still holds an appeal for a lot of travelers looking to clock in some beach hours.

Nha Trang has developed right along the beachfront, where it ispossible to kitesurf (at least wind-wise, it is) although the bulk of the kiting happens at Bai Dai Beach, 23 km south of the city.

It’s another light(ish) wind spot (13 and 15 meter kites are standard) that enjoys some gentle rolling waves that are great for practicing your beginner surf skills.

There are a couple of surf and kite clubs scattered along Bai Dai Beach, each of which offers lessons, rentals, and storage.

 

Kitesurfing in Cam Ranh

Cam Ranh Kitesurfing

credit: Jeff Newell

It feels worlds away from the bright lights and bustle of Nha Trang, but Cam Ranh’s glorious landscapes and quiet lagoons are only a stone’s throw from the city.

This is a seriously underrated kite spot.

Actually, make that two kite spots.

The first spot is wave territory- and fairly big waves, at that. The water is absolutely gorgeous- totally clear blue- and the beach is lined with shaggy palm trees.

The second spot is a big contrast:

A little further down the coast you’ll find a military base, in front of which is a perfect, man-made, flat water lagoon.

Tempting as the flat water may be for beginners, this spot is only suitable for more advanced riders (there’s some fishing lines and wooden posts sticking out of the water).

Once you’re comfortable riding upwind, however, this spot is a breeze.

If you’ve been traveling down from the north, you’ll find that Cam Ranh offers the first taste of strong wind along the coastline.

That having been said, it’s often the place to go to when the wind is too strong in the next kitesurfing spot to the south- Phan Rang.

 

Kitesurfing in Phan Rang

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This is Vietnam’s newest kiteboarding destination- and one that’s drawing a lot of interest.

A far cry from the choppy waters in Mui Ne, Phan Rang is all flat water, clean breakers, and spacious sandy beach.

The main spot during the season is My Hoa Lagoon, where you’ll find flat water inside the reef and sweet little waves breaking off the outer edges.

The wind is strong- but stable (you can expect 20+ knots almost every day during the high season).

When the wind direction switches in the summer months, the nearby Ninh Chu Bay is the place to head for.

Phan Rang also has some of the best surf in Vietnam.

Off the water Phan Rang has tons of adventure potential: hiking in the national park, swimming in hidden waterfalls, and cycling along the picturesque beach roads.

Find out about local kite schools, accommodation, lifestyle, and internet speeds in our digital nomad’s guide to Phan Rang.

 

Kitesurfing in Mui Ne

For the best part of 2 decades, Mui Ne has been touted as Vietnam’s premiere kitesurfing destination.

Today, there are easily a dozen schools in operation here- not to mention the myriad other businesses that have developed around the kitesurfing community.

The wind season in Mui Ne is normally quite reliable (although we’ve recently seen the wind seasons shifting and becoming less predictable- which is something of a global phenomenon).

From November until the end of April, Mui Ne enjoys 18-23 knots on 80% of days- and it’s not uncommon for it to blow well in excess of 25 when a weather front moves in.

Water-wise, it’s usually rough and choppy.

It’s not the easiest place for beginners, but it is by no means impossible to learn here- as we see from the dozens (if not hundreds) of new kiters who get up and riding for the first time on Mui Ne’s challenging chop every season.

In terms of the beach itself, the size of the sandy area changes dramatically depending on the tides and time of year.

Beach erosion is a big problem in Mui Ne, and is usually at its worst around mid December for about two weeks.

People often talk of the challenging shore dump here- another symptom of the beach erosion. In reality, the shore dump is only really significant during the times when the erosion is at its worst; most of the time it’s not an issue.

Along the main kitesurfing beach, C2Sky Kite Center enjoys the biggest beach area. As an IKO registered center, they offer lessons, rental, storage, SUP excursions, foiling workshops and foil rental, and they even hold regular instructor training courses. They’ve got an absolutely stellar reputation- and they tend to book up fast during the season. Be quick to reserve your C2Sky lessons and accommodation!

C2Sky Mui Ne is also the first kite school in Mui Ne to set up their own surf cam and live windguru meter, so users can tune in online to watch for wind and check out the conditions themselves before heading down to the beach.

It’s also worth noting that Mui Ne’s main kitesurfing beach is not the only kitesurfing beach in town:

With Malibu Beach to the north and Little Buddha to the south, kiters (and surfers, for that matter) have their pick of the bunch.

For further info about kitesurfing in Mui Ne, check out our digital nomad’s guide to Mui Ne.

 

Kitesurfing in Ke Ga

Ke Ga is the next cape down the coast after Mui Ne. Known for its iconic lighthouse facing out over the sea, Ke Ga is worth visiting for its landscape alone.

As far as kiteboarding in Ke Ga goes, it’s definitely a spot for the more adventurous.

On one side of the lighthouse there’s a lot of rocks, and on the other side it’s very tidal. Timing is the key here; you’ll only be able to get out of the harbour when the tide is low- but once you’re out there you’ll find the conditions are actually quite nice.

Even if the wind isn’t on, Ke Ga is worth a visit- simply for the beauty of the place.

If the tides are right, you can almost walk all the way to the little island that sits right off the coast (or hire a fishing boat to nip you over), and the hike up to the lighthouse is very rewarding.

And after that, you can always head north to Mui Ne or south to La Gi.

 

Kitesurfing in La Gi

Thanks to its close proximity to Saigon, La Gi is a popular destination for weekend breakers looking to swap the city for the seaside.

It’s the home of super quirky and very cool Coco Beach Camp, which- conveniently- is where you’ll also find the kite beach.

La Gi’s winds are lighter than Mui Ne, but that also means the water conditions are much gentler as well.

Coco Beach used to have their own watersports center, but currently it’s out of action (you may be able to rent a couple of surfboards if you ask). Best off bringing your own gear.

 

Kitesurfing in Ho Tram

Down the coast less than an hour from La Gi, Ho Tram is the home of supermassive new hotel complex and casino, The Grand Ho Tram Strip.

Outside the back of The Grand, there’s an equally supermassive beach- already equipped with its own dedicated watersports center.

The wind here is similar to Ke Ga (i.e. it’s lighter and somewhat less reliable than Mui Ne or Phan Rang, but still blows 12-18 knots regularly when the season is on).

The big, spacious beach and easy shore break (not to mention its close proximity to Ho Chi Minh) make it an appealing alternative to the high winds and challenging water conditions in Mui Ne.

 

Kitesurfing in Vung Tau

Last on this wonderfully windy strip of Vietnamese coastline is Vung Tau, a busy port town that welcomes hordes of travelers coming up on the hydrofoil ferry from Ho Chi Minh.

The wind in Vung Tau is similar to Ho Tram and La Gi, but facilities are limited.

There is some small surf to be found here, and thanks to the establishment of a handful of local surf schools, you’ll have easy access to board rentals and lessons.

 

 

How to get to Vietnam’s kite spots

For Mui Ne, Ke Ga, La Gi, Ho Tram, and Vung Tau:

The nearest airport is Ho Chi Minh (Tan Son Nhat International). From there, you have a choice between public buses (cheapest), tourist buses (slightly more expensive, but way comfier), or trains (similar travel time and cost to buses, but better views). You can also access Vung Tau by ferry from Ho Chi Minh. If you’re willing to part with a bit more cash, you can always choose to hire a private vehicle to get you door to door.

For Nha Trang, Cam Ranh, and Phan Rang:

Cam Ranh International is the closest airport. Hiring a private vehicle is definitely the most convenient way to access the kite spots up here, as public transport is slightly less foreigner friendly, and that much harder to navigate than in Ho Chi Minh.

For Da Nang:

Da Nang has its own international airport which is only a short drive away from the kite beach. Best off grabbing a Grab car straight from the airport; they’re fairly cheap, and they’ll get you right to the spot.

 

Internet in Vietnam

Internet in Vietnam varies greatly from place to place (see our Vietnam spot guides for details on internet speeds in a particular location).

In the cities and developed towns like Mui Ne, fiber optics are widely available and offer speeds of up to 50 MBps (though 10-20 is much more common).

Wifi is everywhere and free in virtually every hotel and guesthouse.

If you’re planning to head to Vietnam for a kitesurfing holiday, your best bet is to grab a tourist SIM card. They’re super cheap and easy to come by (from $5 USD for a month of 3G/4G options).

3G/4G in Vietnam averages 5.4 Mb/s, which is lower than the Asia-Pacific average of 9.69 Mb/s. Vietnam’s 4G networks cover 95% of the nation. The main 4G providers in Vietnam are Mobifone, Viettel and Vinaphone.

See a full guide on Vietnam’s Sim cards options here or there.

 

Have some specific questions about kitesurfing in Vietnam? Head on over to our Extreme Nomads Facebook group and put your question to the community!

 

Cover picture and thumbnail: Alexandru BaranescuKTA

Categories: KitesurfTravel

Grace Austin

After fumbling my way through a year of studying abroad in China, I made the mad-hatter decision to pack up my life in Ireland and move to Asia full time. It's been a wild ride, and I've even managed to pick up some cool little tricks along the way- like how to kitesurf, and speak Chinese (though not very well simultaneously). These days, you can find me beach-bumming around this part of the globe, looking for the best places to put down my bag of bikinis, my board, and my little black doggy.

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